Brown Sesame Seeds
Sesame oil seeds are sources for some phyto-nutrients such as omega-6 fatty acids, flavonoid phenolic anti-oxidants, vitamins and dietary fiber with potent anti-cancer as well as health promoting properties.Sesame plant is a tall annual herb of the Pedaliaceae family, which grows extensively in Asia, particularly in Burma, China, and India. It is also one of the chief commercial crops in Nigeria, Sudan and Ethiopia.
See also Black Sesame Seeds and White Sesame Seeds and Yellow Sesame .
Health benefits of sesame seeds
1. Sesame contains several notable health-benefiting nutrients, minerals, antioxidants and vitamins that are essential for wellness.
2. The seeds are especially rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acid oleic acid, which comprise up to 50% fatty acids in them. Oleic acid helps to lower LDL or "bad cholesterol" and increases HDL or "good cholesterol" in the blood.
3. The seeds are an also very valuable source of dietary proteins with fine quality amino acids that are essential for growth, especially in children. Just 100 g of seeds provide about 18 g of protein (32% of daily-recommended values).
4. In addition, sesame seeds contain health benefiting compounds such as sesamol (3, 4-methylene-dioxyphenol), sesaminol, furyl-methanthiol, guajacol (2-methoxyphenol), phenylethanthiol and furaneol, vinylguacol and decadienal. Sesamol and sesaminol are phenolic anti-oxidants. Together, these compounds help stave off harmful free radicals from the human body.
5. Sesame is among the seeds rich in quality vitamins and minerals. They are very good sources of B-complex vitamins such as niacin, folic acid, thiamin (vitamin B1), pyridoxine (vitamin B6), and riboflavin.
6. 100 g of sesame contains 97 µg of folic acid, about 25% of recommended daily intake. Folic acid is essential for DNA synthesis. When given to expectant mothers during the peri-conception period, it may prevent neural tube defects in the baby.
7. Niacin is another B-complex vitamin found abundantly in sesame. About 4.5 mg or 28% of daily-required levels of niacin is provided by just 100 g of seeds. Niacin helps reduce LDL-cholesterol levels in the blood. In addition, it enhances GABA activity inside the brain, which in turn helps reduce anxiety and neurosis.
8. The seeds are incredibly rich sources of many essential minerals. Calcium, iron, manganese, zinc, magnesium, selenium, and copper are especially concentrated in sesame seeds. Many of these minerals have a vital role in bone mineralization, red blood cell production, enzyme synthesis, hormone production, as well as regulation of cardiac and skeletal muscle activities.
9. Just a hand full of sesame a day provides enough recommended levels of phenolic anti-oxidants, minerals, vitamins and protein.